Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Review: Pretties by Scott Westerfeld

GoodReads Description:
Tally has finally become pretty. Now her looks are beyond perfect, her clothes are awesome, her boyfriend is totally hot, and she's completely popular. It's everything she's ever wanted. But beneath all the fun -- the nonstop parties, the high-tech luxury, the total freedom -- is a nagging sense that something's wrong. Something important. Then a message from Tally's ugly past arrives. Reading it, Tally remembers what's wrong with pretty life, and the fun stops cold. Now she has to choose between fighting to forget what she knows and fighting for her life -- because the authorities don't intend to let anyone with this information survive

My Review:
Why I read this book: Again I read it for the All Male Reviews Challenge hosted by The Unread Reader. I absolutely adore Scott Westerfeld and I feel that his ideas really got people thinking and spawned the thriving genre of Dystopian literature that exists today...not that he was the first, but this series really brought the genre into the spotlight and attracted followers of all kinds. I really enjoyed the world that Westerfeld created. It is so chilling and threatening, because there is the very real possibility that it could become our civilization one day. 

One interesting thing I thought of. This series never mentions race. Race has been completely eliminated from these people's world, along with judgement over appearance. I think most people picture this world as a white one, due to the models on the cover. Does that say anything about our culture still? I choose to think that it does not, that we are only led this way because of pictures we have already seen, but I think the elimination of race altogether is kind of important. This elimination is not necessarily a bad thing in general, but the systematic elimination of anything different  is kind of terrifying. Is the only way that people can live in vague harmony is if they are all the same?  or if our brains are modified? Is there something intrinsic in human nature that forces us to wage war, to commit murder, or to commit other atrocious crimes? This very idea is explored by the people of the compound, as we see in the "humanity" experiment that Tally runs into in this book. I found that part pretty interesting, but don't want to give away too many spoilers if someone is reading this and haven't read the series. 

I absolutely adore Tally, Paris, and Shay's (initial) gang in Pretty Town. They are hilarious and do pretty outrageous tricks, even if they are slightly ( make that extremely) irritating when it comes to making up nicknames and talking. i.e. "Ohhhh Tally-wa that was sure sparkly-making!!!" Urgh...and I thought the most irritating kind of speech was the valley-girl kind from like...ten years back... I think my friends and I will have to try some of the gang's pranks though...particularly the one involving pouring vodka on ice to make it melt...that one has SO many possibilities (insert evil cackle here). Though overall, I enjoyed Tally's development throughout this book. She was very selfless in the end of Uglies, and she continues to grow and learn and to become her own person in Pretties. 

The ending of the book is pretty shocking, I actually didn't really expect what was coming, but I suppose I should have, considering the pattern that the books have taken is that Tally is Ugly in Uglies, Pretty in Pretties, and it stands to reason that she should be a Special in Specials lol. 

I think this book is great. It is addressed to teens and pre-teens without sounding (too) childish.It attacks very important issues that teenagers face today such as peer pressure, superficiality, and true beauty. In addition, it also contains lessons about how to treat the earth. The Rusties were people just like us (some arguements say they WERE us) and they were destroyed because they were too violent, and too dependent on fuel(sound like a certain country I know?) I think this book is a great learning tool and could potentially be used in classrooms, as well as read for enjoyment. 

I give it a 4/5 Stars

Thanks for stopping by!



  1. I've read Uglies and Pretties and I love your review because it echoes my feeling to a great extent. While I adore Tally and her friends, I can't help but get annoyed at their choice of words such as "bubbly-making".


  2. I have read Uglies but not Pretties as of yet.I love the fact that the book tries to give a message to teens and pre-teens without sounding childish!

  3. Love this author! Your review did him justice